Kristen Wiig and Bill Hader scream comedy. However, these formal SNL vets take on a new genre in the indie dramatic/comedy, The Skeleton Twins.
Wiig and Hader play twin brother and sister, Maggie and Milo Dean. The film opens with both Maggie and Milo coincidentally trying to cheat death on the same day. Milo, a little more successful than Maggie, lands himself in the hospital causing his relationship with his sister to suddenly blossom again after a ten-year hiatus. Maggie invites Milo to move across the country, back to New York, to try to get his life back. The catch twenty-two is that Maggie needs just as much help as Milo does.
As much as they can’t stand to be together, they truly do need one another to survive. Suicide is not a new idea to the Dean Family. Milo and Maggie’s father committed suicide when they were children. This left them with an estranged mother and broken family. Their mother moved on as soon as she could. She created a new world for herself and left her children to survive on their own. Clearly, the effects are everlasting. Milo becomes a struggling gay actor and moves out to LA and Maggie struggles to become the perfect wife while holding a job as a receptionist at the same time.
Together the pieces slowly come together for Maggie and Milo. Milo is revisiting his past and trying to reinvent an old relationship that screams trouble. Maggie becomes the master at keeping secrets and she slowly starts to unravel them with Milo back in the picture. Milo takes a job helping out
Maggie’s husband, Lance (played by Luke Wilson), who seems to still think he is living in a frat house. Let’s just say Milo and Lance could not be more opposite if they tried. Maggie tries to hide her secrets by exploring new opportunities, yet those opportunities turn into catalyst to further ruin her marriage. Milo and Maggie have more in common about the downward spirals of their lives, even after a ten-year absence.
As soon as Milo has the opportunity to reconnect with an old flame, he goes for it. This same old flame in the reason that Milo and Maggie had their falling out to begin with. Milo had a “relationship” with one of his teachers when he was in high school. The teacher, Rich (played by TyBurrel), has kept that whole part of his life hidden from his family and has no intention of it resurfacing, just because Milo is back in town. Milo is persistent in trying to reconnect, but still keep this information from Maggie. No matter all that has happened between the two of them, secrets are still a main part of their relationship.
Maggie and Milo learn to be brother and sister again. They count on each other to get by and continue living secret lives. They both know they are in troubling situations, but cannot get out without seeing their true selves. They still fight on queue and just when their relationship seems whole again, it falls apart in an instant.
Another falling out, more bad decisions, and just like that they are back where they started. The movie comes full circle, yet this time Milo is there for Maggie. He saves her and they understand from now on they have each other, and that is the most important thing to each of them.
Wiig and Hader are great to watch in these roles. With two actors who are associated with comedy, it becomes a little un-nerving at times to watch
them try to play such serious roles. Yet, The Skeleton Twins does not let all the comedic moments slip by. The scene where Milo and Maggie are in Maggie’s dental office cleaning Milo’s teeth is one of them. It is the classic Hader and Wiig chemistry that flows without any question. The same goes for the ultimate lip-sync between the two of them. It is hands down one the best musical comedy moments of the year.
Hader and Wiig lip-sync to “Nothing’s Gunna Stop Us Now”
Overall, The Skeleton Twins was a weird, but enjoyable movie. It is not the comedy that you are expecting from Hader and Wiig, but it does lead you to see a completely different side of them. It is very dry and satirical at times and having Luke Wilson in there does lighten the mood. If anything, make sure to catch Hader and Wiig lip-syncing to “Nothing’s Gunna Stop Us Now,” by Starships. It’s definitely a classic moment between the two of them.